Longwood Elastomers

Custom Engineered Elastomeric Solutions

Product Type:
Molded with inserts

Industry / Application:
Oil & Gas sealing component

Challenge:
A customer whose part uses reclaimed inserts was consistently late getting them to Longwood for molding, yet still wanted the finished product delivered on time. (Costly metal inserts are often used in molded products and can be re-used if they are able to be reclaimed. Typically the reclaim process involves shipping the part to multiple locations, adding to lead time and cost.)

Analysis:
Longwood needed to understand the customer’s reclaim process flow. At the time they were bringing the parts from field locations back in-house and then shipping them out to a third party to burn off the rubber. The reclaimed inserts were returned back to the customer, and then finally sent to Longwood for molding. In addition to the amount of time this process took, it also generated significant freight costs, paperwork and the need for the customer to maintain inventory. Reclaim wasn’t their focus, finished parts were. If Longwood could reclaim the inserts for the customer in-house or through a local facility, lead times and freight costs could be reduced.

Solution:
After a thorough cost analysis, Longwood determined that purchasing a burn-off oven and offering in-house reclaim services was the most cost effective solution. It allowed the customer to modify its process flow by sending returned field parts directly to Longwood. Inserts would be reclaimed using new the burn-off oven, then cleaned and prepped for molding. This solution gave Longwood control over scheduling the reclaim and finished part molding processes, and ensured the customer’s due dates were met. The addition of the burn-off oven benefited the customer by reducing reclaim costs, lowered inventory requirements and generated less paperwork.

The burn-off oven has also afforded Longwood the ability to work with other customers on development projects that have reusable inserts. In addition to cost savings and faster turn-around times, the proprietary nature of the product and inserts is protected by keeping them in-house with Longwood.

 

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